This weekend marks the second straight weekend Ketchikan swimming coach Gary Crowe has been in Sitka. While he is currently in Sitka coaching the Ketchikan High School squad, Crowe was in Sitka last weekend with the Killer Whales Swim Club.
The hometown swimming club traveled to Sitka to participate in the October Splash meet on Oct. 7-8, and the pod of Killer Whales impressed their coach.
“We have 53 (on roster), and that’s not counting high school kids,” Crowe said. “They did really well (in Sitka).”
That number jumps when the Kayhi participants join, but the younger members are certainly making a splash in their absence.
“Parker (Hagan) made a senior champs time,” Crowe said. “For a 13-year-old to go to seniors is pretty good. We’re moving along, trying to get everybody to do their best.”
Hagan turned 13 in May.
“Swimming against 18-year-olds,” Crowe said. “Senior champs, you can be any age, as long as you make the qualifying time. … It’s like swimming in the Olympics. Lydia Jacoby, last year, was 17, and she could swim against anybody.”
Hagan won several events in Sitka. But across the board, the Killer Whales had success.
“We swam really well,” Crowe reiterated. “As a team, we were 81% best times over the weekend. So it was amazing.”
And it’s been that way all season.
“Our whole point of these invites is to make qualifying times,” Crowe said. “We’ve made 38 qualifying times for the 14-and-under Age Group Championship. We’ve made six or eight (Junior Olympic) times.”